Rhetorical Analysis of “Don’t Blame the Eater”
In his article “Don’t Blame the Eater” David Zinczenko brings out a well-balanced argument. He begins with a pathos approach, where he introduces the readers to the story by first sharing his life experience about the topic. Additionally, he warns the consumers on the demerits of fast foods arguing its adverse effects on the body of individuals. He offers a first-hand experience of the issue and builds credibility through explaining how it affected him. He blames the food industry by terming them as the main culprits that are to be blamed instead of the consumer. With the use of imagery, questions, personal narrative, and tone, Zinczenko effectually argue his point against the food industry that has since manipulated the consumers. The use of the elements above in his essay will be scrutinized in the hereunder.
Zinczenko poses questions to validate his arguments and convince the reader to believe what he says. At the onset of his essay, he poses a question to his readers as a way of engaging them into thinking about the possible causes of obesity: is it simply the consumer or is there another force affecting these children? Subsequently, he goes on to ask the question: is the case of children who sue McDonald’s for their obesity the same as the case of middle-aged men suing Porsche for their speeding tickets? (Zinczenko 392). As the essay progress, the author ask the question: But where, exactly, are consumers — particularly teenagers — supposed to find alternatives? (Zinczenko 393). He asks these questions to probe the affordability of fast foods alternatives. The aforementioned questions as used by the author help in offering a logical reasoning for the reader to reflect on how the food industry drives the high rate of obesity owing its cheap affordability.
Obesity in children caused by fast foods restaurant according to the author is put into perspective by employing the use of personal perspective. Zinczenko explains the situations that led to his consumption of fast food through the use of personal narrative in the story where he offers a recollection of his life story to explain the fast food menace. At the age of 15, being raised by a single mother who had to work long hours to raise their bills, Zinczenko was left with no option but eat fast foods from either McDonald’s, Kentucky Fried Chicke, or Taco Bell since her mother had no time for cooking (Zinczenko 391-92). The use of personal narrative in the essay make the reader relate more with the facts brought out through the personal aspect of the story.
Within the narrative, he uses imaginative imagery through the description of his status where the reader can have an opinion of him being a lazy fat teen as a result of the fast food. The writer does not offer a more appealing cause of the two types of diabetes but mentions them out boldly. Also, he employs the use of tone to argue his point. Within the essay, he use a frank one to present figures about the increasing rate of obesity in children.
Therefore, he makes use of direct questions for justification, vivid imagery to bring out the real situation, a frank tone in explaining the adverse effects of the fast food to the health of children, and personal narrative to allow the reader relate with the facts from a personal aspect of the story. His arguments leave the readers with a decision to make in recognizing the effects and changing for the better of their health and that of the generation to come.
Zinczenko, David. “Don’t Blame the Eater.” They Say I Say. W.W. Norton and Company, 2012.